Title:
Display device
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A collapsible display includes an adjustable stand, a first plurality of cross members having a first length and a second plurality of cross members having a second length. The display further includes a base, and at least one upright member substantially perpendicular to the base. Each of the first plurality of cross members and each of the second plurality of cross members have an opening therein sized to fit over the at least one upright member, each cross member rotatably offset from another cross member.



Inventors:
Babcock, Richard D. (Sioux Falls, SD, US)
Sorenson, Pat (Golden Valley, MN, US)
Application Number:
11/492674
Publication Date:
01/03/2008
Filing Date:
07/25/2006
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
211/205
International Classes:
A47B43/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
PUROL, SARAH L
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
SCHWEGMAN LUNDBERG & WOESSNER, P.A. (MINNEAPOLIS, MN, US)
Claims:
I claim:

1. A collapsible display comprising: an adjustable stand including: a base; and at least one upright member substantially perpendicular to the base; and a first plurality of cross members having a first length; and a second plurality of cross members having a second length, each of the first plurality of cross members and each of the second plurality of cross members having an opening therein sized to fit over the at least one upright member, each cross member rotatably offset from another cross member.

2. The collapsible display of claim 1 further comprising at least one spacer fitting over the at least one upright, the at least one spacer having a dimension larger than the opening in the cross members, the at least one spacer for providing a space between at least two of the cross members.

3. The collapsible display of claim 1 wherein the upright has an adjustable length.

4. The collapsible display of claim 1 where the upright includes: a first portion that attaches to the base; and a second portion attaches to the first portion of the upright.

5. The collapsible display of claim 1 wherein at least one cross member includes an attachment members near an end of the at least one cross member.

6. The collapsible display of claim 1 wherein at least one cross member includes an attachment members associated with the at least one cross member.

7. The collapsible display of claim 1 in which the cross members are rectangular in cross section.

8. The collapsible display of claim 1 in which the spacers are tubular.

9. The collapsible Christmas tree of claim 1 in which the cross members are wood and the spacers are wood.

10. An adjustable display comprising: an adjustable base; an adjustable upright that attaches to the base; a first set of cross members having a first length attached to the adjustable upright, the first cross members spaced from one another; and a second set of cross members having a second length attached to the adjustable upright, the second cross members spaced from one another and spaced from the first set of cross members, the second length different from the first length.

11. The adjustable display of claim 10 wherein the adjustable upright includes a telescoping structure.

12. The adjustable display of claim 10 wherein the adjustable upright further comprises: a first upright portion; and a second upright portion, the first upright portion attachable to the base, and the second upright portion attachable to the first upright portion.

13. The adjustable display of claim 10 wherein the adjustable base further comprises: a first base portion; and a second base portion, the first base portion removably attached to the second base portion to form the adjustable base.

14. The adjustable display of claim 13 wherein the adjustable base further comprises: a first base extension portion; and a second base extension portion, the first base extension portion removably attached to the first base portion and the second base extension portion removably attached to the second base portion.

15. The adjustable display of claim 13 wherein the adjustable base wherein the a first base portion is substantially perpendicular to the second base portion.

16. The adjustable display of claim 10 further wherein the adjustable upright further comprises: a first upright portion; and a second upright portion, the first upright portion attachable to the base, and the second upright portion attachable to the first upright portion.

17. The adjustable display of claim 10 further comprising a set of instructions for assembling the adjustable display.

18. A method for assembling a display, comprising: assembling a stand for the display; placing a first cluster of cross members onto the stand; and placing a second cluster of cross members onto the stand, wherein the first cluster of cross members have a first length and the second cluster of cross members has a second length, the second length different than the first length.

19. The method of claim 18 wherein the stand includes: a first set of parts used to assemble the stand having a first set of dimensions; and a second set of parts that can be assembled with the first set of parts to assemble the stand having a second set of dimensions.

20. The method of claim 19 further comprising placing a third cluster of cross members onto the stand, the cross members of the third cluster having a third dimension larger than the first dimension and the second dimension.

Description:

RELATED APPLICATION

This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application Ser. No. 60/817,621 filed Jun. 29, 2006, which application is incorporated herein by reference.

TECHNICAL FIELD

This invention is concerned with a display, and more particularly a display apparatus that can be assembled from a small package. The small package can be easily stored when not in use, or easily transported.

BACKGROUND

Many times a business or other user may wish to display a variety of items. For example, people selling wares at temporary shows may want to place a variety of items on display for possible sale. Still other more permanent business locations may also want to display items for sale. Depending on what is displayed or the amount of room available for a display, sometimes a small display may be called for while at other times a larger display is required. Homeowners or other users may also choose to display items. For example, collector's may choose to display a collection of items.

There are many different types of displays. Some displays include shelving or other permanent structures. Other displays include large backdrops and may be cumbersome to store or carry. Still other displays may include computer displays or require software to show one's wares or display a collection of items. Many displays have fixed dimensions and are not adjustable. Still other displays are heavy and difficult to assemble. Still others take up relatively large amounts of space when not in use.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The invention is pointed out with particularity in the appended claims. However, a more complete understanding of the present invention may be derived by referring to the detailed description when considered in connection with the figures, wherein like reference numbers refer to similar items throughout the figures, and:

FIG. 1 is an exploded perspective view of a display device in a first configuration, according to an example embodiment.

FIG. 2 is an assembled perspective view of a display device in a second configuration, according to an example embodiment.

FIG. 3 is an assembled perspective view of a display device in a third configuration, according to an example embodiment.

FIG. 4 is an exploded view of a base of a display device that includes a expanded base and a plurality of upright portions, according to an example embodiment.

FIG. 5 is an exploded view of a base of a display device that includes a telescoping upright, according to an example embodiment.

FIG. 6 is a flow chart of a method of assembly for the display device, according to an example embodiment.

The description set out herein illustrates the various embodiments of the invention, and such description is not intended to be construed as limiting in any manner.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

FIG. 1 is an exploded perspective view of a display device 100 in a first configuration, according to an example embodiment. The display device 100 includes a base 110 and plurality of cross members, such as cross member 120. The base 110 includes a first element 111 and a second element 112. The first element 111 includes a notch 113, and the second element 112 also include a notch 114. The notches 113 and 114 are dimensioned to engage one another. Also included in at least one of the first element 111 and the second element 112 is an attachment portion 116. The attachment portion 116 is for receiving an upright 130 that attaches to the base 110. The attachment portion 116 can be any type of attachment means. In one embodiment, the attachment portion is an opening that includes an inside thread on the inner surface of the opening. An end 131 of the upright 130 includes a threaded portion that engages the inside threads of the attachment portion 116. Of course, other attachment mechanisms can be used and are within the scope of the invention. The cross members, such as cross member 120, are generally grouped into groups that have the same length dimension. These groups of cross members having the same length are also referred to as clusters, or clusters 121 of cross members. As shown in FIG. 1, cluster 121 has a first dimension. The display device also includes a second cluster 141 and a third cluster 151. The clusters 121, 141, 151 are positioned on the upright 130. The clusters are separated from one another by a spacer, 160, 162. The spacer 160 is of a tubular shape and has an inside opening 161 that is larger than the upright 130. The space 162 is similarly shaped. Each of the spacers 160, 162 also has an outside dimension which is larger than an opening 122 in the cross member 120, or an opening 142 in the cross member 140, or the opening 152 in the cross member 150. As result, the spacer 162 spaces the third cluster 151 of cross members from the cross members in the second cluster 141, and the spacer 160 spaces the first cross member 120 from cross members, such as cross member 140, in the second cluster 141. Spacers may also be used, in other example embodiments, to separate cross members within a cluster 121, 141, 151 from one another. The spacers do not have to have the same length dimension, in some example embodiments.

The spacers 160, 162 are not required to be tubular in cross section. Other shapes will also work as spacers. Similarly, the cross sectional shape of the cross members is not limited to a square or rectangular shape. Other shapes can also be used. The spacers 160, 162 and the cross members, such as 140, 120, and 150, can be made of one material, such as wood. In some embodiments, different materials having different colors are used in forming the display device 100. The upright 130 can also be made of any type of material, such as wood, or metal or the like. In one example embodiment, the display device 100 also comes with an instruction set 170. The instruction set 170 and the parts of the display 100 may also be termed a kit. The instruction set 170 provides instructions regarding assembling, disassembling and storing the display device 100. In some example embodiments, discussed in more detail below, the stand 110 and the upright 130 are adjustable so that displays of various sizes can be formed. Separate instructions may be provided for producing displays 100 of various sizes. In addition, some displays may have a cluster 151 with smaller length cross members 150 placed close to the base. Other clusters 121, 141, having longer length cross members 120, 140, may be placed more distal from the first element 111 and the second element 112 that form a part of the base 110. In addition, the first element 111 and the second element 112, in some embodiments, may also be adjustable to provide for a wider and more stable base. The instruction set 170 includes instructions regarding various combinations of the upright 130 and the stand 110 needed to form a stable display 100 of a selected size. It is contemplated that the instruction set would also include directions regarding extending the base as well as extending the size of the upright 130.

FIG. 2 is an assembled perspective view of a display device 200 in a second configuration, according to an example embodiment. The display device 200 includes a base 210 which is formed of a first base member 211 and a second base member 212. Attached to the base 210 is an upright 230. A spacer 260 is placed onto the upright and then a first cluster 221 of cross members is placed onto the upright. The display device 200 is then further formed by alternating spacers and clusters until the display is completed. The display 200 therefore includes the spacer 260 and a spacer 262, a spacer 264, a spacer 266 and a spacer 268. The various clusters of cross members include the cluster 221, a cluster 231, a cluster 241, and a cluster 251. Spacer 262 is positioned between cluster 221 and cluster 231. Spacer 264 is positioned between cluster 231 and the cluster 241. The spacer 266 is placed between the cluster 241 and the cluster 251. The spacer 268 forms a top portion of the display 200. As shown in FIG. 2 the upright 230 extends beyond the spacer 268. In many embodiments of the invention, the upright 230 will not extend beyond the spacer 268 for aesthetic purposes. However, the upright 230 extends above the spacer 268 in FIG. 2 for the sake of illustration and clarity. The display 200 is a relatively small model and can be placed on a desk top, ledge or other similar structure. Display items can be placed on the end of the cross members associated with the clusters 221, 231, 241, and 251. Items can also be displayed from the top of the display 200. For example, an item may be clipped to the spacer 268 or attached to the end of the upright 230.

FIG. 3 is an assembled perspective view of a display device 300 in a third configuration, according to an example embodiment. The display device 300 includes a base 310. The base 310 includes a first base member 311 and a second base member 312. Each of the base members 311 and 312 are notched so as to madeably engaged one another and to from a base for the display. The first base member 311 also includes a first extension member 313 and a second extension member 314. Similarly, the second base member 312 also includes an extension member 316. It should be noted that the second base member 312 also includes another extension member (not shown). When a display becomes larger it is necessary to have a base that is also of a larger dimension to provide an appropriate amount of stability for a larger display, such as the display 300. When comparing the display 300 to the display 200 (shown in FIG. 2) it can be seen that there are many more clusters of cross members and that the lower clusters have links that are greater than the lower cluster 221 shown in FIG. 2. The base 310 is extended when compared to the base 210 to provide extra stability for the enlarged display 300. In addition, the upright 330 is also longer than the upright 230 shown in FIG. 2. The extensions 313, 314 are added to the first base member 311 and the extensions 316 and the one not shown are also attached to the second base member 312 to provide for the larger base. The instruction set 170 that could be included with all the various parts that form the display. The instruction set would be critical in indicating which of the clusters to start with in order to build or form and a display of a selected size.

FIG. 4 is an exploded view of a base 410 of a display device that includes an expanded base and a plurality of upright portions 431, 432 that form the upright, according to an example embodiment. The base of 410 includes a first element 411 and a second element 412. The first element 411 is extended using a first base extension portion 413 and a second base extension portion 414. Similarly, the second base element 412 is extended using a third extension element 415 and a fourth extension element 416. Although only two extensions are provided per base element 411, 412 it is contemplated that additional extension members could be added to produced yet a further or more enlarged base 410 that could support a larger display structure. Thus, the base elements of the base 410 are extendable and adjustable for various sizes of a display that is to be formed. Similarly, the upright 430 is also extendable and adjustable. The upright 430 includes a first upright portion 431 and a second upright portion 432. The first upright portion 431 includes a threaded end 433 and another end 435 that includes an internal threaded portion. The threaded end 433 is received and can be attached to a threaded opening 418 in the base element 412. This produces the base 410 having one of the upright members 431 attached to the base element 412. The upright 430 can be then further extended by adding the second base element 432 which also includes a threaded end 436 and an end 438 having an internal threaded portion. Additional upright elements can be added to the upright elements to form an enlarged upright 430. It is also noted that the upright elements 431, 432 can be of different lengths or elongated so that the display and more specifically the base for the display can be more quickly formed. It should be noted that the base elements 411 and 412 can be extended in other different ways than by adding extension elements to the base elements. There could be small rods that extend out from the base elements or any other such structure to extend the base.

FIG. 5 is an exploded view of a base 510 of a display device that includes a telescoping upright 530. The telescoping upright includes sections 531, 532 and 533. The upright 530 also has a threaded end 540 which can be threaded into a corresponding internally threaded opening in a base member 511. The telescoping upright 530 is merely threaded into the opening 518. Then the top portion 533 can be pulled up or adjusted in height to a desired height. Applying a force to the top member 533 would remove the top member 533 and the second section 532 and from the section 531. Although not shown in this particular figure the base members 511 and 512 could also be extended to provide for additional adjustability to the base 510. In addition, more or less telescoping members could be provided.

FIG. 6 is a flow chart of a method 600 of assembly for the display device, according to an example embodiment. The method 600 for assembling a display includes assembling a stand for the display 610, placing a first cluster of cross members onto the stand 612, and placing a second cluster of cross members 614 onto the stand. The first cluster of cross members have a first length and the second cluster of cross members has a second length. The second length is different than the first length. The stand includes a first set of parts used to assemble the stand having a first set of dimensions, and a second set of parts that can be assembled with the first set of parts to assemble the stand having a second set of dimensions. The first set of parts can be used to assemble a smaller sized display. The second set of parts can be used to assemble a larger sized display. In one embodiment, the first set of parts is used for just the smaller sized display. In another embodiment, the first set of parts is used in addition to the second set of parts in making the larger sized display. Some example embodiments include placing a third cluster of cross members 616 onto the stand. Of course, the cross members of the third cluster having a third dimension larger than the first dimension and the second dimension. Of course other example embodiments include placing many more clusters of cross members onto the upright to form a larger tree. The instruction set 170 (see FIG. 1)

This discussion shows that there are several alternative embodiments of the invention that are possible in addition to the preferred embodiment described above. All such embodiments, and their equivalents, are considered to be within the scope of the invention as defined by the following claims.